Leah Remini’s new docuseries “Scientology and the Aftermath” is a very personal journey for the actress and she tells Ellen DeGeneres exactly why that is.
The former “King Of Queens” star first explains why it is so hard for followers to leave the Church of Scientology: “The Church does have all your secrets from when you were a child, but that isn’t the reason why people don’t leave the Church. People don’t leave the Church because they actually believe what they’re doing is good. It’s very hard for me to attack something that I believed in, and I believed in it wholeheartedly my whole life. It’s a difficult position to be in.”
Remini says what draws people to the religion is the idea they can better themselves. “They claim that they have the technology to get you to the highest enlightenment of that spiritual side of you and to be the best part of you,” she says, adding, “what Scientology offers is a bigger game. You’re part of an elite group saving the planet.”
Despite how Scientology has negatively impacted her life, there are others she believes are even worse off. “My story pales in comparison to what happened to other people, how people are bullied into silence,” she reveals. “We don’t have $3 billion to protect ourselves, right? So, what I have is I’m an actress, and I’m able to speak, and I’m able to give a voice to people who might not have an ‘Ellen’ to go on.”
And for that, Remini says she feels “lucky and blessed. That’s kind of what my path is right now.”
Remini’s path, however, may also take her into a courtroom now that the New York Post‘s Page Six reports she’s suing the Church of Scientology for damages stemming from an inflammatory letter written by a church spokesperson urging A&E to not broadcast “Scientology and the Aftermath”.
According to Page Six, blogger Tony Ortega claims that a Scientology rep sent letters to A&E and its parent company, blasting the former “King of Queens” star as a “spoiled, entitled diva” and “has-been actress.” This led Remini to respond via her attorneys, who have launched a $1.5-million lawsuit against the church to seek “compensation for the past, present and ongoing reputational, emotional and economic injuries and damages [Remini has] suffered.”
The church has already responded, claiming Remini’s “demands are nothing more than a provocative ploy to generate publicity for what will no doubt be another failed program by a failed ‘celebrity’ seeking to make a buck off of her former religion,” and that “the Church will freely exercise its constitutional rights.”